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Today in Russian Business – July 19, 2010

The Emergencies Ministry says that extreme summer weather is destroying grain, vegetable and fodder crops in Russia’s southern Astrakhan region, and is concerned that grain prices could double as a result.  The BBC is running a video report on the current drought, which is thought to be Russia’s worst in over a century.  ‘At this point, people don’t trust Russian drug makers,‘ but an industry revamp is going to require large investment and a reorganization of production priorities, says the Moscow Times.  Mobile TeleSystems has paid $123.5 million for broadband and cable television provider Multiregion.  The head of Sistema wants Russia to legally prohibit the import of devices that use GPS satellite technology as a boost to the development of the competing Glonass system, and effectively to ‘close the market for equipment that doesn’t have a Glonass chip‘.